Military Review

Winter Pogrom of Livonia

The Russian-Tatar tornado swept through the lands of the Derpt bishopric, touching the possessions of the Order itself and the Archbishop of Riga. The Livonians could not oppose anything equivalent to the Russians.

Winter trek 1558 of the year

The rati gathering took place in the late autumn of 1557. Ivan the Terrible sent to Novgorod the governor, led by Prince M. Glinsky and D. Yuryev, gathered troops in Novgorod and Pskov, and also sent troops of the former Kazan Tsar Shigalei (Shah-Ali), two Tatar princes Kaibula and Tokhtamysh with Mordovians and Cheremis ( Mari), Cossacks and even Cherkasy. That is, the army was impressive. The Livonians themselves estimated the size of the Russian army in 20 - 33 thousand people. According to the Russian ranks, the army assembled in a campaign against the Livonians from Pskov consisted of five regiments - the Greater, Front, Right and Left Hands, the Watchtower under the 10 commander under the command. The troops were traveling light, without heavy artillery, only with light guns. They did not intend to linger for the siege of the fortresses. It is worth remembering that the main forces of the Russian army at that time, like the main attention of Moscow, were drawn to the “Field” (Crimea). Livonia wanted only to punish, and not to wage a full-scale war. Therefore, they mainly used the forces of Novgorod and Pskov bordering on Livonia and the light Tatar cavalry.

The main objective of the campaign was to punish the Livonians for their lack of understanding. B. Ryussov, the author of the Livonian Chronicle, wrote: “The Muscovite (Ivan Vasilyevich. - Author.) did not start this war with the intention of conquering the cities, fortresses or lands of the Livonians; he only wanted to prove to them that he was not joking, and wanted to make them keep their promise, and also forbade his military commander to besiege any fortress. Prince A. M. Kurbsky (the first governor of the Guard Regiment) also directly pointed out that he and his soldiers received an order "not to get cities and places, but to fight their land." Thus, Ivan the Terrible solved two problems at once: 1) a large-scale military demonstration was supposed to punish and reason with the Order, to make it more accommodating; 2) the children of the boyar and Tatar troops received an excellent opportunity to capture various goods and captives (at that time it was a common military practice - the troops were "fed" from the area where the war was going on).

As a result, the Russian-Tatar tornado swept through the lands of the Derpt bishopric, touching the possessions of the Order itself and the Archbishop of Riga. The troops did not take cities and castles, did not besiege fortresses, they only burned and robbed the towns and surrounding villages, ravaged the district. During the two-week raid, about 4 thousand households, villages and manors were burned and looted. The Livonian authorities could not oppose anything equivalent to the Russians. Despite the threat of war, the Livonian Confederation was unable to quickly gather troops capable of resisting the Russians. Small Livonian detachments hid behind the walls of fortresses and castles, not daring to join the battle, at best they attacked individual small Russian and Tatar detachments, and then hastily hid in their fortifications.

Having crossed the Russian-Livonian border near Pskov on January 22, 1558, the tsarist army was divided. The main forces with Prince Glinsky and the Tatar king Shah-Ali moved to Dorpat to the north-west, bypassing Lake Peipus. Part of the troops was sent to the west and southwest. This army was commanded by princes V. Barbashin, Yu. Repnin and D. Adashev. This light army included Tatars, Cherkasy, Cossacks, a number of boyar children and archers, who were supposed to support the cavalry if the enemy tried to counterattack. At the same time, the archers were put on horseback in order to keep up with the cavalry. The actions of the light rati, mostly cavalry, were very effective. Having devastated the possession of the Order and the Archbishop of Riga, they riveted the attention of the Master and the Archbishop to themselves, not giving them the opportunity to help Derpt, where the main blow fell. In 10 days, the light army of Barbashin, Repnin and Adashev devastated the area “near the Lithuanian border, along a hundred and fifty miles, and across a hundred miles. The actions of the Russian-Tatar cavalry were swift. The harsh winter did not prevent the pogrom of the Livonian possessions. Having completed its destructive activity in this area, the cavalry turned north and joined the main forces near Derpt-Yuriev.

Having assembled into a single army near Yuriev, the Russian regiments three days ruthlessly devastated the neighborhood, then crossed the Embach and moved further north. Holding the main forces in a fist, in case of an enemy counterattack, Glinsky, Yuryev, Shah-Ali slowly moved the fiery shaft to the north. As the chronicler wrote, the governors “were sent to the soldier along the Riza road and along the Kolyvanskaya, and fought to Riga for fifty miles, and to Kolyvan for thirty”. Small volatile detachments sent by the voivods smashed all the environs. One such detachment was sent under Lais - about 4 thousand people (about 1 thousand shooters under the authority of T. Teterin, G. Kaftyreva, 500 - 600 boyar children and up to 3 thousand Tatars, Mordovians, Cherkas). 5 February 1558 of the year “came under the city,” wrote the chronicler, “but they burned and killed many people, killed more than three thousand, and got plenty of stallions and all sorts of rukhledi” (good). You should not blame the Russian-Tatar troops for excessive cruelty and bloodthirstiness, so the war was fought at that time, and the "enlightened Europeans" acted no better, but it happened that it was even more cruel. In the modern world, things are no better, for example, in Syria and Iraq, the warring parties have repeatedly been noted in mass killings, looting, and even selling people into slavery.

In mid-February 1558, the Russian army crossed the border south of Narva and returned safely to its borders. The losses were minimal, the mining was huge. Thus, the winter hike ended in complete success. The "foolish" Germans were quick to agree to pay tribute. Already 1 March, Master Fürstenberg asked to accept the Livonian embassy. 13 March Livonian Landtag opened in Wolmar. The main question, which was discussed by the deputies from the Order and the cities that came to him, was what to do in this situation. The master advocated a war with Muscovy, saying that only after successful hostilities could one expect a satisfactory peace. But Riga, Dorpat and Revel deputies did not share the master's belligerent sentiments. The wealthy burghers pointed to the example of the Swedish king Gustav Vasa, who was defeated by the Russians, although he was stronger than Livonia. The war will cost Livonia too expensive, it is better to pay off from Moscow, bargaining about the amount of tribute. In the end, the deputies decided that it was possible to pay 60 to Russia thousands of thalers and send a new embassy for negotiations. The process of making this decision by the Landtag was accelerated by a new Russian raid. On March 19, a Russian detachment under the command of Prince G. Temkin-Rostovsky in the area of ​​Izborsk, Vyshgorod and Red Town crossed the border and for four days devastated the possessions of the Order and the Riga Archbishop.

Winter Pogrom of Livonia

Russian siege weapon of the XNUMXth century

Narva case

However, while in the Landtag the Germans tried and ransomed, while they were collecting money to pay Yuriev tribute, while the embassy was preparing, the situation changed. The Narva garrison fired upon the Ivangorod fortress, thus violating the armistice agreement.

Founded by the Danes in the 1557th century and sold by them a hundred years later to the Livonian Order, the city and castle of Narva were a strategic outpost on the border, first with the Novgorod land, and then with the Russian state. Narva controlled the water route along the Narova River, not far from the place where it flows into the Gulf of Finland and the city was located. This fortress blocked the way to Revel and Dorpat. Therefore, a few hundred meters from it stood the Russian fortress Ivangorod, built by Ivan III. The hostile policy of Livonia led to the fact that in April XNUMX the tsar and the Boyar Duma decided to build a city and a pier for trading below Ivangorod, by the sea. The work was completed in the summer. The experience of the rapid construction of fortresses and cities among the Russians was great. So, the clerk Ivan Vyrodkov supervised the construction of a new fortress and pier - the same one who had previously erected Sviyazhsk to capture Kazan. Swedish, German, Dutch and other ships began to come to the new harbor.

During the winter campaign of the main Russian army, Prince D. Shestunov, with the forces of the Ivangorod garrison, fought and burned the Narva places. In response, the Narva Vogt von Schnellenberg ordered the Ivangorod settlement to be shelled. After that, the mayor of Narva asked for help from Reval. A small detachment of arquebusiers arrived with cannons and gunpowder. Ivangorod governors - Prince G. Kurakin, I. Buturlin and P. Zabolotsky, remembering that negotiations were underway between Moscow and the master, asked the government for an opinion on what to do in this situation. An artillery specialist, a participant in the campaigns against Kazan, deacon Shestak Voronin, was sent to Ivangorod. With him, the clerk brought a royal letter with permission to answer the Germans "from the whole outfit" (artillery).

Russian troops erected batteries on the outskirts of Narva and began shelling the Livonian fortress. On March 17, the Narvitians asked for a truce. Ivangorod governors agreed to interrupt the shelling for two weeks. The local Livonian authorities decided to use this time to strengthen the defense. The mayor of Narva and the ratmans (members of the city magistrate) bombarded Revel with requests to send gunpowder and guns. Revel also decided to send 2 hundred horsemen and 3 dozen knights (soldiers) to help Narva, since the forces of the Narva Fog were small - in case of war, it had to put up only 150 horsemen.

As a result, while the master and the Landtag were arguing and deciding what to do, the situation around Nrava escalated. The patience of Ivan the Terrible ran out. In response to another voivodship letter that fire was being fired from Narva and “they were making strife”, he ordered the voivodes to “shoot with everything at Rugodiv” (the old Russian name for Narva). In early April, the governors resumed the shelling of the enemy fortress. “And they shot for a week from the entire outfit,” the chronicler wrote, “from direct battle from the upper stone cores and fire, and they made a great need for them and many people were beaten.” The city, according to the Livonians, was literally littered with Russian shells. The Narvitians panicked and informed the master that the Russians were bombarding the city day and night with all kinds of guns (some cannonballs weighed up to 20 kg). Also, Russian troops blocked the city from the sea, constantly made attacks on the left bank of the Narova, devastating the surroundings. This led to a lack of food and fodder. In addition, the city treasury was empty and there was nothing to pay the soldiers. In order not to leave the city unprotected, goods had to be confiscated in the city's warehouses, and all merchants and homeowners had to be taxed with an additional tax in order to find funds to pay the soldiers.

There was still no help and there was no, so the Narva city authorities sent a delegation on April 9 and informed the Russian governors that they were not responsible for the actions of Schnellenberg, and that they were ready to transfer to Russian citizenship. The Narva burghers, who lived through trade, who, moreover, did not receive strong help from other Livonian cities and the master, did not smile at the prospect of being completely ruined or even killed. Therefore, they decided to go into allegiance to Ivan the Terrible. An agreement was immediately reached on a new truce, the Narvitians gave the hostages "in pledge".

While the Narva ambassadors with the burgomaster Krumhausen were traveling to Moscow, Ivan Vasilyevich, having received the news that the citizens were ready to recognize his power, sent reinforcements to Ivangorod - the governor Alexey Basmanov and Daniil Adashev (brother of A. Adashev). In addition, the governor A. Buturlin was transferred from Gdov to Ivangorod and I. Zamitskaya from the city of Nerovsk. Governors ordered to occupy Narva. They had a few troops, with no more than 2 with XIVUMX, with 2,5 people. Narva had a small garrison (at the beginning of May 150 of Livonians and 300 of Knecht mercenaries), but it was a strong fortress. In addition, it was obvious that the master is unlikely to be an impassive observer while the Russians are besieging and taking Narva.

Thus, in Moscow, as before, they did not attach much importance to the conflict with Livonia. The winter campaign showed the Order's extreme military weakness, and further negotiations showed political looseness even in the face of a military threat. But the Russian government decided not to rush and take only Narva, which itself asked for citizenship. Therefore, a small army was allocated to occupy Narva.

Upon arrival, Basmanov and Adashev first tried to connect with Narvtsi, but the Germans, recovering from the bombing, "lied", telling the Russian commanders that they allegedly did not send their ambassadors to the Russian Tsar in order to "away from the maister". Obviously, in Narva, after the departure of the embassy with the burgomaster, the anti-Russian party won and the townspeople again asked for help from the master. Basmanov immediately blocked all messages from Narva to the outside world and sent guards (reconnaissance). Providence voivode was not superfluous. Fürstenberg sent reinforcements - the Felinsky commander Kettler assembled a detachment of 800 warriors (including 500 horsemen). Livonians approached Narva on April 20 and camped in 4 miles from the city.

Capture of Narva by Ivan the Terrible. Hood B. A. Chorikov

To be continued ...
Articles from this series:
Livonian war

460 years ago the Livonian War began
Russian victories in the Livonian War

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  1. Basil50
    Basil50 19 July 2018 05: 41
    And for us it’s all about * culture * and other things that are crawling from Europe all over the world. The Danes *laid* the fortress of Narva on the site of the fortress they burned. The Baltic formations were engaged in robberies of the border RUSSIAN lands, and did not see any obstacles in this for themselves. They began to yell only when they themselves began to be beaten. The peasants from the Baltic were not killed, but *taken out*, unlike the raids of the knights.
  2. igordok
    igordok 19 July 2018 06: 46
    The Boyar Duma decided to build a city and a marina for trading below Ivangorod, by the sea.

    The prototype of Ust-Luga.
  3. Albatroz
    Albatroz 19 July 2018 08: 57
    How many times they fought for this Narva, what was the outpost of the north-west ...
    1. igordok
      igordok 19 July 2018 09: 06
      The Pskov-Peipsi reservoir is a very extensive natural barrier. It is easier to get around from the south, through Pskov, but from the north, through Narva, or in the middle, through the Warm Lake (Ice Point) is more difficult.
  4. Brutan
    Brutan 19 July 2018 18: 07
    The Baltic states have always been a battlefield
    And it was precisely after the Russian scepter that it began to flourish, therefore it is good that Russia then wanted these lands. God willing, still want)
  5. Evgenijus
    Evgenijus 19 July 2018 20: 25
    Those who trust in force understand only force. He who comes to us with the sword will die by the sword. The change in the foreign policy of today's Russia vis-à-vis the West and the United States has too much disguised the President of Russia in his statement about this. The West is waging an undeclared war against Russia in alliance with the United States. What does the diplomatic expression?
  6. seti
    seti 19 July 2018 21: 40
    Thank you very much. Great article.
    1. Russian jacket
      Russian jacket 20 July 2018 05: 44
      Interesting .... Thanks for the article. And now the liberals howl about Ivan the Terrible. Crazy people don't act like that...